When listening to the music off of Iron Griffin’s debut EP release, you feel as though you are soaring on the back of a magnificent mythical beast through a valley of epic sounding metal with glorious riffs leading the way. The band captures that retro rock and classic metal spirit quite well to where you wonder if the band did not go back in time to record the album.
Finnish musician Oskari Räsänen from the band Mausoleum Gate started Iron Griffin as a side-project, but looks to be talking it further with the release of the debut EP. He plays all the instruments on the EP and brought in singer Toni Pentikäinen to handle all the vocal parts. Iron Griffin may be a side-project, however, I believe the quality of music could one day evolve into a full band that will hopefully go on tour and release full-length albums.
I am extreme impressed by the recordings and songwriting from Iron Griffin. The entire EP is well produced and the arrangements do not disappoint. The band’s sound reminds me of music from certain epic fantasy themed metal bands like Omen, Cirith Ungol and Manilla Road. You also notice that the sound of the recordings takes on a retro like quality that compliments the songwriting and the album’s theme very well.
The opening synth and keyboard piece does a great job building suspense for the first song, “Message from Beyond.” There are some catchy melodic riffs and lead parts accompanied by a solid foundation of drums and bass. I think the bass tone conveys such a vibrant classic sound that adds so much to the overall sound. Toni’’s vocals provide an epic touch as he sings over the metallic grooving melodies.
Following “Message from Beyond, “ is the victorious sounding track, “Metal Conquest.” The song features a fearsome bass line along with a strong main riff. When talking about creating a verse section that builds up to an epic chorus, Iron Griffin simply does not disappoint. The next song, “Journey to the Castle of the King,” starts out with a more slow tempo guitar riff and eventually explodes into a faster paced majestic sounding classic metal style. “Lord Inquisitor,” is the final song off the EP and contains some killer NWOBHM type riffs. I also noticed on this song how Toni can hit notes in a similar fashion to that of King Diamond which matched with the instrumental compositions sounds extremely amazing.
After listening to Iron Griffin I have nothing to complain about, because the music did not disappoint and flowed with a certain synergy that I have not heard too often when reviewing albums from new artists. Oskari deserves a lot of credit along coming up with the concept for this release and will hopefully continue to work on more material. I definitely would like to see more music from Iron Griffin and I’m sure fans of classic metal will be checking this out once it is released. Lastly, I must point out how amazing the album art looks for this EP. I feel like I’m flying on the back of an Iron Griffin!
Check out the Iron Griffin bandcamp to get a digit copy: